On Memorial Day, we living veterans give thanks for those who gave all.
We living veterans have our thanks every day, when we wake up free. We also have the knowledge that we helped in some way to secure the blessings of liberty for ourselves and our posterity.
We, the living, stand in the shadow of those who have passed on before us. We may even struggle with guilt that it was others, and not us, who paid the ultimate cost.
On this day especially, expressions of gratitude to us ring hollow in our hearts. We know we are not worthy of them today, having given so much less.
On other days we can rationalize the assurances that we were willing. We offered ourselves as sacrifices, even if the ultimate price was not required. Today, if we are honest with ourselves, we cannot.
We cannot claim superior strength or skill in battle, because we know too many great warriors who fell. All who fell have one thing in common: they were there.
They gave their all, on and Memorial Day we can only thank them.